Tuesday, January 21, 2014

J. Maki Blanc De Blancs Reserve 2004 - One of the Best Sparkling Wines on the East Coast (PA)


I've been buying J. Maki wines since they were first known as French Creek back in the first year or two of their being opened in the early 2000s. The wines have always been consistent, and they have always been among the better sparkling wine producers in the north east. Always impressive. Recently, I served the wine to a bunch of foodies, who were most impressed.


The winemaking career of Janet Maki began in 1973 with a gift; a wine press from an elderly neighbor when her family members showed no interest. Add a small shipment of Zinfandel grapes from California to her basement in Philadelphia, and the experiment began.

She continued making wine through the late 1970s and 1980s. A desire for a vineyard beckoned. Chester County, with well-drained shist soil and a low clay component, provided the proper bed structure, and a thirteen acre parcel was available with a lofty, south-facing slope on which wine grapes thrive. In 1991, with one row of chardonnay, one acre of pinot noir, and one half acre of vidal blanc planted, the J. Maki Winery at French Creek Ridge Vineyard was born. Twenty seven months later their first sparkling wine was offered for sale, and in 2001, Janet Maki became the first, and only, American winemaker ever to be honored with the gold medal for sparkling wine the Vinales Internationales in Paris, France.
2004 Blanc De Blancs has a big beautiful nose of ripe Bosc pears, ripe red apples, and hints of bread and a nice acidic brightness, and a soft, creamy finish. A beautiful, elegant sparkling wine.

Still one of the best on the entire East Coast. You could serve this to anyone and impress them!